Chasing Memories

Just what are we doing? Where are we headed? As another frenetic December draws to a close and we reach the end of the holiday season we all pause to take stock of what’s happened and what we’d like to become next.

I’ve always wondered why we bother. New Year seems to be a way for people to start afresh with promises and delusions. But why bother doing that just because the year has increased by one? Is it that the change in digits reminds us that time is ticking along far too fast and that we need to make positive changes in the way we are whilst we still can? Or is it fanciful thinking of another kind? We’re trying to start over… and over… and over again as the years progress so that we can feel that life is worth living and that there is hope for something better.

We’re always chasing memories. We’re hunting down the positive ones from the recesses of our minds and promising ourselves that we’ll build a more optimistic future. I try to do this regularly and not wait until the clock strikes in the New Year. Promises to ourselves should be made regularly and with conviction rather than half-heartedly because we feel we should. I think this is why New Year’s resolutions so easily fall by the wayside by the time we reach the Spring.

We Wear Our Faded Memories is a consideration of how wrap ourselves in our rose-tinted past after we’ve created a vision for ourselves out of our experiences. We use photographs to remind us of who we were. Snapshots are just that, a snapped shot; a hint at a moment that we’ve kept due to its positive place in our family history. Our flawed memories only have the image to cling to. We probably don’t remember the moments immediately before or after the picture was taken. We probably don’t even remember the moment itself, but since the picture is witness to us having been there, and that this is a happy smiling moment, then it must be a positive and worth carrying forward.

I do not know if I remember this happening or if I’ve seen the picture so many times that I have a false recollection that I was there. I’m not sure if being witness to my own memory is even that important at all. The location now has changed beyond recognition. There is nothing to directly link the current me to this younger me other than the faded paper memory I hold in my hand. We Wear Our Faded Memories is a way of taking the memory beyond the paper and owning it by painting it onto clothing. My recollection of the photograph is now a tangible entity and reworked into something current. It’s a physical manifestation of memory which I can take forward into the New Year and beyond.

We Wear our Faded Memories [detail]
We Wear our Faded Memories [detail of work in progress; paint on fabric]

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